4.8 13
by David Halberstam

ISBN-10: 0786888512

ISBN-13: 9780786888511

Pub. Date: 05/21/2003

Publisher: Hachette Books

A moving testament to the remarkable brotherhood of firemen, from the Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling author.

"In the firehouse the men not only live and eat with each other, they play sports together, go off to drink together, help repair one another's houses, and, most important, share terrifying risks; their loyalties to each other must, by the demands of

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A moving testament to the remarkable brotherhood of firemen, from the Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling author.

"In the firehouse the men not only live and eat with each other, they play sports together, go off to drink together, help repair one another's houses, and, most important, share terrifying risks; their loyalties to each other must, by the demands of the dangers they face, be instinctive and absolute."

So writes David Halberstam, one of America's most distinguished reporters, in this stunning book about Engine 40, Ladder 35 — one of the firehouses hardest hit in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center Towers. On the morning of September 11, 2001, two rigs carrying 13 men set out from this firehouse; only one fireman survived.

Firehouse takes us to the very epicenter of the tragedy. Through the kind of intimate portraits of the men and their families that are Halberstam's trademark, we watch the day unfold. We come to understand the culture of the firehouse itself, what makes these gifted men want to be firemen, and why in so many instances they are eager to follow in their fathers' footsteps and serve in so dangerous a profession. And why more than anything else, it's not just a job, but a calling.

This is journalism-as-history at its best, the story of what happens when one small institution gets caught in an apocalyptic day. It is a book that will move readers as few others have in our time.

Forty years ago, at the age of 28, David Halberstam was reassigned from the Congo, where he was a war correspondent for the New York Times, to Vietnam. His pessimistic dispatches from Saigon won him the Pulitzer Prize at the age of 30. In 1972 he published the definitive book on the roots of the Vietnam War, The Best and the Brightest. It and his 12 subsequent books have all been national bestsellers.

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Hachette Books
Publication date:
Edition description:
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Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.75(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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Firehouse 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
best book by far i have read in a very long time. as a volunteer firefigher on long island i live very close to new york city and very close to the fire department and many of the men who passed live right by me. this book is a great background on the people who risked their lives for the people of new york and the united states. not only were the heros but they were your negibors and your friends. i highly recommend this book to anyone is looking for an inside on the men who were heros that day and after. this book made me laugh and cry. very emontional. loved it! good bless the fire departments of the united stats and all other of it heros
Guest More than 1 year ago
Growing up, I had always imagined being a fireman just as a low salary, so-so job that i would never consider myself doing. After reading this book however, my entire veiw of Firemen has changed. This book really shows you what it really means to be a firmen and what each of the ladder 40 engine 35 men did everyday and how they risked their lives everyday for us. It brings a huge amount of respect with the book and it really lets you understand how a firemen lives his life. The book goes through each man and gives a one chapter biography of his life always ending with the 9/11 incident. It was a little slow reading, as i am used to fantasy books, but all in all, it was incredible.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Firehouse is a book about a firehouse in Manhattan, New York. This is a story about 13 firefighters who would enter into the Twin Towers, and many would not return.  Most of the story is spent telling of the firehouse and how the crew bonded. Also a brief background of the fireman who lost their lives. The perspective of the parents, and wives of each fireman was also given. The author was trying to inform people about the sacrifices of the firefighters and the tragedy that occurred. The attended audience I think is teens and young adults. This is a easy read and is a heart touching story of 13 brave firefighters.  Background a reader needs to know is obviously about 9/11. I think anyone would understand this book. Even the younger generation who may not have been alive or remember it, but are learning of the great attack on the United States. The author doesn’t really have a main climax it’s back and forth through out the whole story. The author talks about all 13 fireman and how each loved each other as brothers. The majority of the story is about how brave each firefighter was and jobs and achievements they had done leading up to 9/11.  I think this was a good book, and I think it is important to read about the sacrifice people made to save complete strangers. I think the author achieved his goal of informing the people about the fireman who lost their lives on 9/11. This book shows the love the fireman had for each other and how many took huge pay cuts to stay together. If one fireman needed something done the rest would help out to get it done five times faster. This book has a sorrow approach to it when it talked about the widows and parents that had lost their loved ones. My favorite part was just the fact that this firehouse bonded so well and knew each others strengths and weaknesses. They knew their place at the firehouse, and no one thought they were better than the other. The most important thing was the love for each other the fact they knew the other guy had their back. I think everyone should read this book, or a book like it. Most people especially kids and teens don’t understand the sacrifices the firefighters made on 9/11. This is more of book that was written to inform instead of a book written for entertainment. Anyone who wants to learn about firefighters or 9/11 would like this book. The firefighters knew what they were getting themselves into, and they did it anyway. The ones who were going up the stairs, while everyone else was going down. They were the real heroes in 9/11 those who sacrifice their life for someone else’s. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What it takes to become a true live hero. Firehouse was a book that told the story of firemen that lived together in a firehouse that was engine 40 ladder 35.But when the day 9/11 came 13 of them went to the help with the problem and only 1 came back alive. This book was not just about 9/11 and what happened to the 13 firemen of the house and what they did only that night. it was the stories of what the firemen had done and there family’s. How they got to the firehouse and how others saw them as people and what they do to become a fireman. This book was all the memories of being a firemen and what people and there family’s what others to remember about them before 9/11.You even got to hear some of the stories that changed some of the firemen’s lives of what happened. Having been a daughter of a firemen and hearing some stories about calls and them reading about others they still hit you hard. Two of the stories that where told where one the men was acting different then he normally dose and when his wife asked what was wrong that’s when he told her this story “he had been on a fire in the Bronx up around the grand concourse and 190th Street, And the engine had gotten to the fire a little slower than it should have, john believed. He was assigned to the back of an apartment house, and arrived just as a young woman of perhaps eighteen or twenty had panicked and jumped for an upper floor. What made it so painful was that her situation had not been that perilous; she had had more than enough time, if she had held steady .but she was young and scared,…..” a second firefight in the book that was his brother was “Sure enough, Bob Ginley had been on a fire in which he had had to carry out the burned body of a child, a child they had just missed saving” both of the stories had left images in my mind just like when my dad would tell me stories. These stories are what I call one minute earlier stories because most of the time they feel like if they were only one minute earlier they could have saved the people. This book tells more than just what firemen do it tells what happens in between the calls. What happens with the family before and after some of the hardest calls that they get called on. How should I end this it’s hard to writ because everyone can take thing form this book so read and find out what knowledge you can get for this book about firemen and the true emotions of what it takes to become a true live hero?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
gotblue1000 More than 1 year ago
Firehouse by David Halberstam is a tearful yet inspiring take on the 9/11 tragedy. In this compelling book, the reader watches as thirteen brave men from Engine 40 Ladder 35 come to be known as heroes. Twelve out of the thirteen die, but leave behind a story to help us understand the terrorist attacks. This book started out by telling a little about each man at Engine 40 Ladder 35. The reader learned their personalities, their time at the firehouse, and how they impacted others around them. Later on, when the planes hit, the reader saw how each man was shocked at what had just taken place. Though each of them were shocked and a little frightened, they still did not expect this mission to be their last. The last part of the book describes how their families suffered and mourned over all their deaths. If you read this book (which I strongly recommend) do not read it with a plot summary already in mind. Read it as if you have never heard of what happened on that tragic day. Otherwise, you will have trouble connecting with the characters and understanding why Halberstam wrote this in the first place. He wants us, the readers, to see that the heroes were ordinary people. He wants us to see the tragedy on a very real level; not just something we hear and read about. Halberstam gives the reader an inside view of the thirteen firemen’s lives. The reader meets each of them on a much more personal level. By giving the reader names and faces to connect to, the numbers have a far greater impact. This book is written very well but it could have been more organized. Several times I caught myself flipping back pages because I was unsure of whom the author was referring to. Also, it seems as though most of a chapter is devoted to a single character and after that, you wouldn’t hear about him again. It seemed the author had forgotten about him. If the book was more organized, I don’t think it would have been an issue. After reading this book, the effects of 9/11 have certainly become more real to me. This deeper look on the day that changed America has left me to realize how fortunate everyone of us truly are. How many families could have lost a mother, father, brother, or sister that day but didn’t? This book has made me even more grateful for my family and friends.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book. It was well researched and a very interesting read. Although the theme of the book was about 911, the book centered on the lives of some of the fireman that died that day. Instead of dwelling on how they died, it talked about how they lived! Very inspirational.
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RC2403 More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
im a 15 year old girl and i thought this book was amazing. i literaly read it and im now signing up for the volunteers. living so close it was weird hearing about this.